How do I park a car properly for safety?
While all it really takes to park your car is to stop and put your transmission in park, you need to ensure that you’re parking safely. Incorrect parking can lead to a number of problems, including additional wear on the transmission, and even accidents if the parking brake isn’t set and your car rolls on an incline. Here’s what you need to know:
Always use the parking brake, even if you’re not parking on a hill. The parking brake should be set firmly, pulled all the way up. Drivers with automatic transmissions should engage the parking brake prior to putting the car in park.
Never park over dry, flammable materials (leaves, grass, papers, etc.). The catalytic converter and exhaust system on your car get very hot and can ignite these.
If you drive a stick shift, put the car in first gear and engage the parking brake.
If parking uphill, make sure your wheels are turned away from the curb, not toward it. This ensures that if it rolls, it will turn into the curb and possibly stop.
If parking downhill, make sure your wheels are turned towards the curb, not away from it. This ensures that if it rolls, it will turn into the curb and possibly stop.
Double check that your windows and moon roof are completely closed.
Lock your doors and verify that the alarm system is engaged.
Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.
Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing